Japanese umbrella is mainly made with bamboo born and Japanese paper as mentioned. An occidental umbrella and Japanese umbrella both of them are a kind of umbrella but the origin, the structure and usage are different.
Japanese umbrella uses natural material to make. The number of its born are thirty to seventy to support the surface of the umbrella and it born will be straight when it’s open. An occidental umbrella uses tension when its open and the born will be curved when it’s open.
When a Japanese umbrella is closed, the surface will receive into inside and it looks like a pole, not like an occidental umbrella. The born of the umbrella uses split equally bamboo as it order so the umbrella will be a pole as original bamboo shape.
More over, an occidental umbrella carries holding a handle however a Japanese umbrella carries holding the head. This is because not to stay behind rain water to the head. If it’s so, it will start to break down from the head as the material.
Nokiana is a small hole onthe edge of “oyabone”. This is important point to make a beautiful shape.
Oyabone is the born of an umbrella. The beautiful looks of Japanese umbrella and its strength are depends on Oyabone’s bamboo quality.
Kobone is inner born which hold the Oyabone.
The material for Kobone is the part near the root of bamboo as it is
It is a movable part of handle which connects Oyabone and handle with Kobone to open and close the umbrella.
It is a stopper on the handle to not to close when the umbrella is opened. Sometimes there are two Hajiki to align the angle depends on the wind and rain.
It says the origin can go back to around 794 A.D. which is the beginning of Heian Period. The umbrella was used to make shade or for ceremony at that time. The original umbrella was not able to close.
During the history of an umbrella, Azuchi-momoyama period (1573-1603) is important. The umbrella developed to open and close. At the same time it became rainy day tool as today.
Umbrella as rainy day tool became popular after the middle of Edo period (1603-1868). Until then, people were used rain-cape and woven hat, instead of an umbrella.
An umbrella got its position as the necessities of people life. There are some articles says when a feudal domain was in financial difficulties, the lowest class samurai were doing side job to put surface of umbrellas to help the feudal domain.
The umbrella culture accepted during the Edo period and it start to have another way of usage. It starts to use as a part of dressing up and made many types (design) of umbrellas in the period.
During the long period of the history, it repeatedly improved and combined with traditional cultures, art as a part of Japanese craft.
Actually we can find umbrella culture in Kabuki, Tea ceremony, etc. combined with each traditional beauty which is really different from any other countries’ culture.
An umbrella calls “Kasa” in Japanese. And sometimes Japanese umbrella calls “Karakasa”. This sounds strange.
Umbrella is equal to Kasa. Then what is Kara means? Kara word comes from “Karakuri” which has meaning of mechanism. Kara-Kasa means an umbrella has mechanism to open and close.
It is normal that an umbrella opens and closes. But when it was invented about 400 years ago, it’s easy to imagine the umbrella’s simple and sophisticated mechanism was wonderful craft.
There are several types of Japanese umbrella, since long time ago. Of course it perfectly combine with Kimono, but it’s uses for dances and even interior room decollation.
This is a large parasol uses for outside tea ceremony. Sometimes it uses for decollation of temples, shrines even local tea shop.
The edge of the parasol is curved into inside. It also calls “Tsumaore kasa” or “Tsumeore kasa”.
There is a large one such as 170 centimeters diameter, 210 centimeter height.
Normally uses with its base attachment or bind to a stake.
Actually, there is almost nobody uses Japanese umbrella in Japan.
There are production but not for daily use. Mainly it uses for gift, souvenir, and tea ceremonies. The number of production is decreasing little by little.
Perhaps at this rate, Japanese umbrella will disappear.
However there are new movement which uses Japanese umbrella’s techniques to make interior decollation goods which has sensitive beauty. For example, lighting tool made with bamboo, Japanese paper and umbrella making special secrets is just an art.
To create such a thing is based on long studies. The real good things always evolve.
It is a pleasure if the authors mind spread as same as high quality goods to the world.